Making your school inviting to prospective families involves more than just putting a welcome sign out by the road. Here are some of the important things that today’s parents look for when evaluating private school options in their area:
- Easily navigable website. You’ve probably heard this advice before, but that’s only because it’s so important. If prospective families can’t quickly find the information they’re looking for, they’ll turn to your competitor schools instead.
- Online inquiry option. Online inquiry forms simplify the admissions process for parents who are eager to move to the next step in the discovery process. Be sure to use an inquiry form that’s integrated with your SIS in order to properly access funnel data and track prospects.
- Open houses. Some schools offer frequent open houses or tours while other schools schedule them in monthly or quarterly intervals. If your school offers open houses, make sure the information is on your school’s homepage and featured in boosted posts/paid ads on Facebook. A formal, organized open house helps prospective parents see your facilities, get information, speak to teachers, and develop an initial impression of the school. Some schools conduct Friend Day open houses–i.e., “bring a friend to school for the day”–as an alternative way to introduce prospective students to the campus.
- Ongoing outreach through admissions process. If a prospective family inquired at your school but you haven’t seen any movement from them, considering reaching out on a consistent basis through various channels–email, phone, etc. Once you have families in your admissions pipeline, contact them frequently to let them know what they need to complete the process and ask how you can help.